Many medications available for common medical conditions may be restricted when taken by athletes. You need to be aware that these are readily available in products prescribed by your doctor or bought over the counter in a pharmacy.
The advice from UK Anti-Doping is to check every single substance or medication before you use it, even if you have used it before. It is also important to remember that medications bought abroad may contain different substances than those in the UK and you should always check before you take them.
As an athlete, one of the most important things to be aware of is the principle of strict liability. This means that you are personally responsible for any banned substance found in your system, regardless of how it got there and whether or not you had an intention to cheat.
The facts - what you need to know
The World Anti-Doping Code states the roles and responsibilities that athletes have in relation to anti-doping.
So, you must:
know and abide by the Anti-Doping Rules, policies and practices
be available for testing at all times
take responsibility for what you ingest or use
tell medical professionals that they should not use prohibited substances or methods, as per the WADA Prohibited List, and that any advice or treatment given to an athlete should not violate the Anti-Doping Rules
tell UKAD and your International Federation if you have committed an Anti-Doping Rule Violation within the last 10 years
co-operate in any doping investigations when asked to do so
disclose the identity of your support personnel upon request from an Anti-Doping Organisation
Athlete’s Anti-Doping Rights Act
The Athletes’ Anti-Doping Rights Act promotes athlete rights within anti-doping and ensures they are clearly outlined, accessible, and universally applicable e.g. an athlete has the right to receive anti-doping education.
Click here for more information from the UKAD website.
Medicines bought in the UK, USA, Canada, Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand or Japan, can be checked using Global Drug Reference Online (or GlobalDRO) www.globaldro.com
The system can be used to check the status of branded medications and individual active ingredients, for both in-competition and out-of-compeitition. It also provides a unique reference number for every search that you conduct for your records.
The status of the substance will be one of the following:
- Prohibited - The substance is prohibited in this form and will return a positive test if found in an athlete's system.
- Conditional - There is a limit to the amount of this substance an athlete can have present in their body, or there are conditions on the methods of its use (eg it can only be inhaled and not taken in tablet form). This is clearly detailed and care should be taken when taking a prescribed dose.
- Not Prohibited - The substance is not currently on the WADA Prohibited List.
It is the athletes repsonsibility to check their medication on GlobalDro.com